After The Ruin, a civil but colorless, drug-dampened, equalitarian society eschewing memories of the past emerged, where everyone followed established rules of politeness enforced by a council of ever-watchful Elders. On the ceremonious day of graduation, teenagers leaving childhood are assigned careers chosen by the Elders. Jonas, who feels different from his appointed parents and his two best friends, Fiona and Asher, finds himself assigned to the rare position of Receiver of Memories, trained by a mentor (later called The Giver), who telepathically imparts memories of the world before The Ruin. Jonas learns emotions such as love, fear, excitement, loss and the concept of family, but when the planned elimination of a baby named Gabriel, whom he comes to love as a brother, enters his awareness, Jonas decides society needs to change, which the Chief Elder will do anything to stop.
Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil/revised by statmanjeff
User Reviews: I went into the movie with high expectations after having read the book in high school. I absolutely loved the book and always imagined it to be a certain way. While some aspects of the film met my expectations in terms of visual delivery and execution of the novel, a lot of it did not. There were many scenes that I would have loved to see but were not included.
As a film on its own, I found some of the acting to be lacking in emotions and conviction. I did enjoy Meryl Streep and the Giver, but the rest were very average. Some parts of the film felt slightly rushed, missing out on the true essence and meaning it could have conveyed. I did not feel as indulged in the film as I was in the book. Perhaps this was because I loved the book very much, but I feel it was also because the film lacked passion and depth. The overall message and meaning behind the story was not adequately conveyed as important scenes were not emphasized on and were rushed. Jonas’s character development happened too quickly and we could not create a connection with any of the characters in the film.
Overall, I found the film to be average. Those that have read the book will find it to be below expectations whereas others may enjoy it for the concept and meaning it attempts to convey.